Open the door to the rest of your life.
Most of us develop ways of doing things that were useful at some point in our lives.
And then, for some reason, these ways are no longer helpful.
Are you ready to make a change?
Are you ready to find new ways of doing things?
Note: Please be aware that my practice remains quite full. I am not taking any new clients for the foreseeable future.
Who I Am
I have had an interesting life journey. I began my career with an Honours degree in History after which I taught high school. I then achieved the courses towards a PhD in Education, but I did not finish my dissertation. Along the way, I have also picked up a teaching speciality in working with students with special needs and I have an Early Childhood Education diploma.
As I neared my middle years, I went back to school to earn a Master’s degree from St. Paul University/University of Ottawa in Counselling. For nearly 3 decades, I have worked as a counsellor with people with differing needs: anxiety, depression, stress, grief and loss, low self-esteem, problems in relationships, and problems facing some of life’s difficult transitions.
I am a Registered Psychotherapist with the College of Registered Psychotherapists of Ontario (CRPO), registration number 002585. I also hold Canadian Counselling Certification (CCC) with the Canadian Counselling and Psychotherapy Association.
Counselling can help you to explore many issues that are of concern to you in your life. My role as a counsellor is to help you to explore those issues and to attain goals that you set for yourself. Together we can find ways to change how you have been doing things that no longer work for you. The process of change can be challenging, but if you are ready, then counselling can help.
I use an integrated approach to counselling, drawing from a number of different counselling models or ways of doing counselling: I endeavour to match my way of working with your needs, both personal and cultural. Over time, the approach to counselling may need to change, as your needs change. We will discuss those changes in approach before they occur. However, there are some challenges or risks associated with the counselling process. First of all, it is hard work to make changes in your life especially if you have been doing things or reacting to situations in a certain way for some time. As well, some others may not want you to make those changes. Sometimes, as we try to “figure out” what is bothering you and the best ways for you to make changes to resolve these issues, you may feel worse before you begin to feel better. Moving down the road to a better life, through counselling, can be “hard work”. I will work with you to find the right path for you in this journey.
The overall goal of my counselling practice has always been to support each person in discovering their own inner resources and in developing effective coping skills to meet life’s demands.
Some Concerns that People Bring to Counselling
People experience many difficult concerns in their lives. Sometimes, they consult a counsellor to help them sort out their needs and choices and to learn to make changes in their lives. Some examples of these concerns include:
⇒ Anxiety and worry
⇒ Communication issues
⇒ Grief and loss
⇒ Low self-esteem
⇒ Traumatic life experiences
⇒ Problems coping with some of life’s difficult transitions
⇒ Relationship concerns: family, friendships, and marital
Once we begin our counselling relationship, I begin a file of your personal information. Each time we meet or have clinical contact, I will record brief notes summarizing that session. Those notes are stored in a locked cabinet. You have a right to request access to your personal information or request corrections to this information.
I will treat what you tell me with great care. My professional ethics (that is, my profession’s rules about moral matters) and the laws of the government prevent me from telling anyone else what you tell me or to share my notes unless you give me written permission. These rules and laws are the ways our society recognizes and supports the privacy of what we talk about – in other words, the “confidentiality” of counselling.
However, it is important for you to know that there are times when the law or my professional ethics require me to inform others of certain information, such as some concerns related to abuse. There are also various other limits on our confidentiality. We will discuss these limits to confidentiality in greater detail when we first meet.
Note: Please be aware that there may be a waiting period of up to 1-2 months for an initial appointment. This status is variable, so please watch this website for updates.
Counselling sessions are 50 minutes in duration. I work part-time: Usually on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays with appointments available in the morning, afternoon, and evening.
I see clients in an office in the lower level of Trinity St. Andrew’s United Church, 291 Plaunt Street South, Renfrew. Enter the building from the Quarry Avenue entrance.
I prefer to arrange appointments by telephone. You can contact me at
- 613-752-2015, extension 1 for a confidential voice message. I will call you back as soon as I can.
- 613-433-0885 (cell phone). Please note that I live in an area with no cell phone service, but you can leave a voice message and I will contact you when I am in town.
- I can also be reached by email, but be aware that email transmissions cannot be guaranteed to be fully secure. firstname.lastname@example.org
I would ask for 24 hours notice to cancel an appointment. The usual session fee will be charged for missed sessions and for those cancelled “at the last minute”. I do understand, however, that situations such as illness and other emergencies may preclude a timely call.
Psychotherapy is not covered by OHIP. A fee will be charged for each counselling session. In 2019, my standard fee will be $80.00 per session. Nonetheless, I am committed to offering affordable services to my clients and can, in some cases, offer a sliding fee scale. For clients paying for their own therapy costs, fees are paid, by cheque or cash, at the end of each session. You will be given a receipt. The Canada Revenue Agency recognizes the cost of non-reimbursed services provided by Registered Psychotherapists in Ontario as a medical expense eligible for tax credit.
Direct billing is available for those covered by extended health insurance with Blue Cross and Green Shield. Therapy may be covered by other extended health insurance companies or you may have an employee assistance program through work. This will be discussed in the first session. In my practice, therapy covered by some extended health policies is supervised by Dr Augustine Meier, C. Psych. Dr Meier can be reached at 613-276-0362.